Probate cases are referred to mediation at the Initial Scheduling Conference (the first time parties appear before a judge). Attendance at mediation is required. Once mediation is scheduled, a notice/order of the scheduled mediation with the date and time will be mailed to each party or to the party’s counsel of record, if any.
How do I…
Prepare for probate mediation?
Before mediation takes place, the parties must file a Joint Pretrial Statement with the Probate Division as required by the Court’s scheduling order. If the parties are unable to file a Joint Pretrial Statement, the party may file a separate Pretrial Statement accompanied by a Motion for Leave to File the Separate Pretrial Statement.
- Mediation sessions are available Monday through Friday at 1:30 pm.
- The sessions are held in the DC Superior Courts’ Multi-Door Dispute Resolution Division, which is located at 410 E Street NW, Second Floor.
- Mediation sessions are scheduled for two hours. That time frame can change depending on the progress of the mediation.
- Parties may schedule more than one mediation session, if needed.
Agreements reached in probate mediation sessions are usually written by the parties with the assistance of the mediator, if needed. The settlement agreement is to be signed by all parties (or by a party’s counsel of record, if any). The original, signed settlement agreement and a Settlement Agreement Praecipe are to be filed with the Probate Division for review to ensure that it complies with any applicable legal requirements.
If a settlement agreement is not filed, the parties must attend the next scheduled event (pretrial or status hearing) in the case.
Can I request an in-person mediation?
You may ask for an in-person mediation. All participants must agree to an in-person mediation. To make a request you must submit an Application to Appear In Person within 24 hours of receiving the mediation scheduling email sent by your case manager. The case manager will follow up with the requesting party(s) within 24 hours of the request.